Film industry Delegate Meeting with Governor Sindh

A delegation of Film Producers Association comprising of Chairman Syed Noor, Chairman Distributors Association Mohammad Ijaz Kamran and Chairman IMGC Group Sheikh Amjad Rashid met with Governor Sindh Mohammad Zubair last week at the Governor House.

The Chair of delegation director Syed Noor appreciated the gesture of federal government and patronage of Honorable Governor Sindh to hold Pakistan International Film Festival (PIFF), however, he also pointed out that the whole film industry of Pakistan was not truly represented in festival as the major players in the industry like Evernew Group, Eveready Group, IMGC Group, and HKC group with contribution of over 80% of movies produced and released in Pakistan were not taken on board.

He further said, “It shows discrimination particularly to Punjab where offices of recognized producers association and distributors association established 63 years ago.

He emphasized that most of the senior technicians, artists, and producers were from Lahore with viable contribution in the growth of film industry after partition while most of the artists and technicians working currently in Sindh belongs to Punjab.

Mr. Mohammad Ijaz Kamran pointed out the delay in implementation of film policy for the welfare of artists and technicians, announced in film convention this year. He said the policy was restricted up to announcement and no practical step had been taken so far.

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Amjad Rashid, who has released around 290 movies with investment of around Rs.280 million in Pakistani movies under his company IMGC, emphasized the desired role of federal government for the promotion of film business in China.

He said, “India has successfully launched and earned substantial foreign exchange with the release of movies DANGAL, SECRET SUPERSTAR, BAJI RAO MASTANI and even a mediocre movie like HINDHI MEDIUM (which has crossed business of $ 23.82 million) but no Pakistani movie has been released there so far”.

He further said that breakthrough of Pakistani movies in China was only possible with government support as most of the film policies and offices are controlled by the public sector in China.

He also told revealed in the meeting that during the visit of Indian Prime Minister to China, a delegate of film makers from private sector was also included among other representatives of country, and a MOU was signed between two countries on releasing each other’s films was signed in presence of Indian prime Minister.

“But in spite of most cordial and brotherly relations with China, no higher dignitaries’ of our country has included any film related delegate on their visits to Chine to discuss imports/exports of Chinese and Pakistani movies and co-production between the countries.

Incentives on international releases of Pakistani movies and tax xemption for producers and distributors were points, also highlighted in the meeting. .

Honorable Governor Sindh Muhammad Zubair accepted the reservations expressed by the delegate and assured that the federal government treats all the provinces alike and would have appreciated the participation of film industry from Punjab in PIFF.

He also promised the delegate to take up proposal of release and co-production of Pakistan- China. Other subjects discussed were also assured for his support and patronage.

The First Pakistan International Film Festival Held in Karachi

The first Pakistan International Film Festival (PIFF) took place last week with full drive. The four day event (from 29 Mar to 1 April), was full of happenings that included penal discussion, movie screenings and gala dinners. The festival was started with a press conference and the unveiling of award trophies a day prior to the actual event.

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This festival comprises panel discussions on the subjects of ‘Film Diplomacy & Cross Border Collaboration’, ‘Innovation on Screen: Digital Dimensions’, ‘Genre Busters’, ‘From Script to Screen and Beyond’, ‘Films for Change: Socially Motivated content in South Asian Film Industry’ and ‘The Future of Music and Lyrics: How important is music in the subcontinental cinema’.

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The participant lineup was diverse and includes prominent local and foreign speakers; Sultana Siddiqui, Asim Raza, Anjum Rajabali (celebrated Indian script/screenplay writer), Nandita Das (actor/director/producer of upcoming Indian movie Manto), Harsh Narayan (Indian filmmaker), Sajal Ali, Rashid Khwaja, Abrar Ali Khan, Farees Shah, Faizan Syed, Adnan Sarwar, Sana Tauseef, Atiqa Odho,S. S. Rajamouli (director of the mega blockbuster movie, Baahubali), Vinay Pathak (acclaimed Indian actor), Kamran Jawed, Amin Farooqui, Tahir Moosa, Zeenat Lakhani (writer of Saba Qamar starrer Hindi Medium), Saket Chawdhari (director of Hindi Medium), Nishtha Jain (maker of documentary film Gulabi Gang), Haseena Moin, Jami, Subhash Kapoor (prominent Indian producer, screenplay writer and director, known for his work in Jolly LLB 1 and 2), Vishal Bhardwaj (Indian filmmaker), Hareem Farooq, Izzat Majid, Asif Noorani, Sultan Arshad, Rekha Bhardwaj (Indian playback singer), Dr Omer Adil, Nila Madhab Panda (director of Kadvi Hawa) and Mr Shobu (producer of mega blockbuster movie Baahubali).

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There was a total of eight movie premieres – Cake, The Valley, Lala Begum, Moomal Rano, Zaraab, The Song of Scorpions, Kuch Bheege Alfaaz and The Wishing Tree. The Wishing Tree features Shabana Azmi and Zaraab is the first Balochi language film to be premiered in Pakistan. A special matinee show of the newly released animated movie Tick Tock will also be arranged for children at Nueplex Cinemas.

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Apart from the premieres, screenings of short films, documentaries and feature films were organised at various institutes throughout the city including Goethe Institut, Iqra Defence Valley, Iqra University North Nazimabad campus, Alliance Françoise and T2F.

At the end of each day there were gala dinners hosted by; Chairprerson Pepsi Cola Sukkur Beverages, Saeeda Leghari; President Hum Television Network, Sultana Siddiqi; and Chairman Nuplex Cinemas, Jamil Baig. Each night was full of who is who of the Pakistan film industry, Bhutto Zardari also attended the dinner by given by Sultana Siddiqi.

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The final day of Pakistan International Film Festival was a start-studded evening for its first awards gala ceremony of the four-day festival at Frere Hall, Karachi.

The event started with a speech by Sultana Siddiqui, president of the Karachi Film Society while Minister of State for Information and Broadcasting Marriyum Aurangzeb was also present at the event as the chief guest. The event also featured live performance of Sufi Music Maestro Abida Parveen and a fashion showcase, followed by dinner.

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The award were given as follows; Best documentary feature: “Parween Rehman-The Rebel Optimist” directed by Mahera Omer from Pakistan; Best documentary (short): Veil Done from India, Best short film: Aghai Nazem from Iran, Best feature: Lala Begum, directed by Mehreen Jabbar from Pakistan, Best editor: Mitesh Soni (Jannan), Best cinematography: Rana Kamran (Na Maloom Afrad 2), Best debut (female): Hania Amir (Janaan), Best debut (male): Ali Rehman Khan (Janaan), Best writer: Khalil ur Rehman (Punjab Nahi Jaungi), Best music: Sahir Ali Bagga (Arth-The Destination), Best director: Nadeem Baig (Punjab Nahi Jaungi), Best film: Punjab Nahi Jaungi, Best actor (female): Mehwish Hayat (Actor in Law), Best actor (male): Fahad Mustafa (Actor in law).

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The recognition awards were given to Dawn Media Group, HUM TV and Jamil Baig of Nueplex for their contributions and efforts in making Pakistan International Film Festival a success. Ali Zafar was honoured with a special award in the category of artist for peace.

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The festival was supported by the Cultural Department of Sindh Government and Ministry of Information of the Federal Government of Pakistan, HUM TV, Nueplex Cinemas and Dawn Media Group. Commercial partners for the event were Unilever and Khaadi.

Filmfare Middle East Relaunched by Danube Group

UAE’s largest diversified corporation, the Danube Group made a grand entry into the dynamic media industry with the re-launch of film and celebrity magazine ‘Filmfare Middle East’ last week at Raj Mahal Theatre, Bollywood Parks, Dubai.

The glittering event was shined with the reigning super stars from Indian and Pakistani cinema such as Deepika Padukone, Karan Johar, Fawad Khan, Mehwish Hayat, Manish Malhotra, Jackie Shroff, Dia Mirza along with Founder and Chairman of Danube Group Mr. Rizwan Sajan and the crème de la crème of Dubai.

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Singers like Armaan Malik, Aman Malik, Usha Uthup and Bappi Lahiri raised the tempo of the evening by performing live in their own style while Bharti Singh knocked the crowds to laugh out loud.

A tribute to the veteran actor Sri Devi was one of the highlights of the evening followed by numerous felicitations of the leading stars.

Finally, the truly talented and stunningly beautiful Deepika Padukone unveiled the cover of the magazine.

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Mr. Rizwan Sajan said on the occassion: “Filmfare Middle East is a cult brand and it was my dream to revive it. We started this venture because we believed that this magazine holds an essence for the cinema and a huge readership among its target audience. Hope, the magazine will keep the same old spirit.”

The new avatar of the magazine will be catering predominantly to the large Asian expatriate population in the UAE and the GCC, as well as a significant Arab population.

Bollywood gives no space to married actresses, reveals Rani Mukherjee

Bollywood actress Rani Mukherjee has shed light on the discriminatory behavior Bollywood has adopted towards the film industry’s married actresses.

In conversation with the Indian Express, the 40-year-old revealed that “Just because I got married and had a baby, nothing changed in me. I am the same actor.”

She further elaborated that an actress, after getting married and having children is as good as dead for the film industry; whereas actors do not have to go through this unjust and prejudiced conduct.

“There are basic prejudices that come with married actresses and those who are mothers. How we are a dead commodity. We don’t sell and that no one wants to see us. Actors don’t get this. They have a successful career and parallelly lead their normal lives. Only actresses are made to choose marriage late in their lives because they feel our commodity dies once we are married” she stated.

Discussing the success of her recent comeback film ‘Hichki’, Mukherjee had revealed that the opinions of the audience are always of hefty significance, in comparison to the actor, since the actor will always give her best regardless of whether she is a mother or not.

TICK TOCK: A TRAVEL TO THE HISTORY

S4 Solutions and HUM Films held the premiere of the first time traveler Pakistani animated film, Tick Tock in Karachi. The premiere was attended by media and celebrities along with their kids.
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Tick Tock is written by renowned film critique Omair Alavi and directed by Omer Hassan, a well known name in the entertainment industry. The movie is produced by Sana Tauseef under the banner of S4 Solutions. The voice-overs of animated characters in the film also boasts an all-star cast including Ahsan Khan as Hassan, Maria Memon as Daanya, Alyy Khan as KK and the antagonist Ghulam Mohiuddin as Gobo. Fusion famed Emu has composed the music and background score of film.

Tick Tock is an animated adventure movie about two history buffs Hassan and Daanya who embark upon a time travel adventure along with their teacher KK, and attempt to stop Gobo from altering the history to his own advantage. During travel they meet the greatest heroes of Pakistani history and overcome all the negative forces to keep the timeline intact.

Speaking on the occasion, producer of Tick Tock Sana Tauseef said, “The key strength of Tick Tock is its concept and content. The idea was to remind our younger generation about the iconic heroes from Pakistan’s history in an entertaining way. This is the first time the concept of time travel adventure has been explored in a local animated movie and the entire team of Tick Tock has been the greatest strength in bringing the concept to life.”

Tick Tock is in theatres all over Pakistan from March 23, 2018.

Ghughi: A story of Revenge, Love and Ego

Adnan Siddiqui’s Ghughi has become the talk of telly town these days.

The story ‘Ghughi’ is about all the women, who were and still are destroyed in the wars, the conflicts and the catastrophe over the years, as women have been the target of the worst atrocities whether they have been dishonoured as the spoils of war or ravaged to the avenge.

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Set in the back drop of Partition of Sub Continent, Ghughi also raises a curtain from the agonies and pain, the people of that time went through and that also included the cruel exploitation and the abuse of women. But at the same time, story unfolds the emotions of passionate love and vicious enmity shaped against the violent upheaval of partition.

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Based on Amrita Pritam’s novel Pinjar, Ghughi is written by Amna Mufti and directed by Iqbal Hussain. Serial stars Adnan Siddiqui, Amar Khan, Rashid Mehmood, Farah Tufail, Raheela Agha, Asma Abbas, Mohsin Gillani and many more.

Ghughi introduced the fresher Amar Khan is lead role, who proved to be the excellent addition to our
entertainment industry through her talent and dedication.

Watch Ghughi, every Thursday at 8:00 PM on TvOne.

The Aftermoon Show with Yasir Hussain

Hum TV’s new show THE AFTERMOON SHOW with Yasir Hussain is aimed to relax and entertained the audience with the wit and humour of its host and guests.

THE AFTERMOON SHOW is a celebrity based show in which most wanted TV and film celebrities are interviewed by the host. Other than witty questions and interviews they will also become part of entertaining, fun segments. The show also has a puppet and other characters to bring more excitement to the programme.

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The show is divided into six segments. CHIT CHAT COUCH SESSION has Yasir in conversation with the guests: KATEHRA is a segment where celebrities have to stand in a katehra (witness box) and clarify funny accusations put on them by the public which will be asked by Yasir in his inimitable style: CHAI YA THANDA challenges celebrities with interesting riddles and they will be given brain boosters if they get stuck: URTA TEER is another interesting segment where rapid fire questions are aimed at celebs who have to give quick answers: PUPPET segment has a special puppet character who likes to share jokes which are silly but he thinks they are funny: TWO MINUTES OF FAME segment invites a new singer in every show who will have a chance to showcase his talent.

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These segments are used in different episodes depending on the celebrity guest. There are more entertaining segments also to be introduced.

The sloganof the show is, “Daikhnay se na rehna Qasir, The Aftermoon Show with Yasir!”
The After Moon Show is aired on Hum TV every Saturday at 7:00 pm.

A Horror Saga, Bela Pur ki Dayan

Hum TV’s nr e Drama Serial, Bela Pur ki Dayan revolves around injustice and revenge. The central character of this intense suspense thriller is a ghost who wants the residents of the house where she was wrongfully killed to solve the mystery of the multiple homicides that took place decades ago. Aziz Ahmed and his family shifts to their family home after winning a lengthy legal battle from his stepbrother Rehmat. Soon after moving into the old Karamat house, the family becomes increasingly disturbed by a supernatural presence and Aziz’s granddaughter and grandson appear to be the target. Aziz’s son Rameez soon realizes that the supernatural presence doesn’t want to harm them, instead it’s pointing towards something else. In his quest to solve the mystery Rameez discovers the shocking truth about his own father and family that shatters him from inside.

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The serial is produced by MD Productions, written by Enam Hassan and directed by Saif E Hassan. Major cast includes, Sara Khan, Amar Khan, Adnan Siddiqui, Osama Tahir, Rayyan, Shakeel Yousuf, Sajda Syed, Irfan Khoosat and others.

Bela Pur Ki Dayan airs every Thursday at 8:00 pm on Hum TV

PIFF Conduct Workshop on Film

Pakistan International Film Festival, under the banner of Karachi Film Society organised a three-day Digital Storytelling Workshop last week in Karachi.

Before workshop, the PIFF team went throughout schools and universities in Karachi to find passionate and keen students to be part of the workshop. Thirty students were selected from institutions such as Karachi University, Habib University, Indus Valley, Szabist and Iqra University. Marginalized communities such as Lyari and Machh Goth Hub were also visited in order to access a diverse group of students. In an effort to make the workshop more accessible the event was free of cost.

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President, Karachi Film Society and HUM Network Limited, Ms Sultana Siddiqui who attended the opening and closing sessions of the workshop explained the vision of PiFF and the importance of conducting such workshops to groom young filmmakers. She also distributed certificates among the participants.

The experienced name in the field like Senator (r) Javed Jabbar, Oscar winning director Sharmeen Obaid Chinoy, director Nadeem Beyg, Sarmad Khoosat, Rizwan AQ, Rasheed Noorani and Salman Sirhindi conducted workshop and talked on various aspects of filmmaking.

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Over the course of three days the chosen participants learnt how to write, direct, shoot and edit under the guidance of the industry professionals. The students were divided into groups and were tasked to make short films which were screened on the concluding day of the workshop.

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This was the first session of the many activities that have been organised by the Pakistan International Film Festival under the patronage of Karachi Film Society.

The official websites of the festival:
www.piffestival.com
www.karachifilmsociety.org

Bollywood legend Sridevi passes away at 55

Sridevi, one of the most notable actresses of Bollywood, passed away in the wee hours of Sunday morning, Indian media reported, citing a massive heart attack as the cause of her death. She was 55.

The actress was in Dubai with her family, including husband Boney Kapoor and daughters Khushi and Jhanvi, to attend a wedding.

She was a known face in South Indian films before her entry into Bollywood. She made her debut as a child artist in in Tamil film “Thunaivan” in 1969. She also worked in Malayalam, Telugu and Kannada films.

Sridevi was awarded the Padma Shri, the fourth highest civilian honour in India, in 2013.

Her screen prowess coupled with her beautiful eyes and powerful screen presence soon made her one of the most sought-after actors in the Indian film industry.

The actress made her Bollywood debut in 1978 with film Solwan Sawan and shot to fame after appearing in Himmatwala.

She also starred in other major hits such as Kadam, Tohfa, Maqsad, Masterji, Nazrana, Mr. India, Waqt Ki Awaz, Chandni, Sadma, Nagina, Chaalbaaz, Lamhe, Khuda Gawah, Gumrah, Laadla, and Judaai.